Hollywood on the Potomac
Think of Georgetown as the real life equivalent of the MGM back lot. Hollywood has used Georgetown as a backdrop for drama, comedy, intrigue, romance, crime, disaster — and horror. You are standing near the 75 steps that figured prominently in The Exorcist, perhaps the most famous movie made in Georgetown. The 1973 film told a chilling tale (written by Georgetown University Graduate William Peter Blatty) of a girl, possessed by a demon, who lives in a house adjacent to the steps. In a famous scene, a priest hurtles to his death down these steps. On the other side of the steps is the historic Car Barn built to store and transfer horse-drawn, and eventually, powered trolleys.
All the President's Men about the investigative reporters who uncovered the Watergate scandal was set in Georgetown. Three of the main characters, long-time residents Ben Bradlee, Bob Woodward and Katherine Graham, lived in Georgetown at the time of the filming.
Georgetown locales often featured are the C&O canal, Wisconsin Avenue and the Whitehurst Freeway. in No Way Out Kevin Costner used the Freeway as a means of Escape. Téa Leoni if forced of the Freeway in Deep Impact and all of Key Bridge is submerged by a tidal wave. In Minority Report, starring Tom Cruise. Wisconsin Avenue is a street in the future so no parked cars or pedestrians are visible. Campaign headquarters for Kevin Klein as presidential impersonator in the movie Dave is at 1422 Wisconsin Avenue. In St. Elmo's Fire a film about university students, bar scenes were filmed at The Third Edition at 1217 Wisconsin Avenue.
Arnold Schwarzenegger shops at Georgetown Park in True Lies. Will Smith lives on the east side in Enemy of the State. Tom Hanks bicycles down P Street in this early movie The Man with One Red Shoe.
In addition to movies, numerous documentaries and television episodes —- from 24 to The West Wing -- have been shot in Georgetown, a community that is a “star” in its own right.